Drug trafficker mum gets Christmas present
A YOUNG mother who turned to trafficking drugs to support her own habit will be released from prison in time to see her two children for the Christmas break.
Makhela Jayne Strandquist, 23, spent almost nine months in pre-sentence custody, which was the longest she had abstained from her drug of choice which she started consuming at age 12 and quickly fell into a habit of daily usage.
She pleaded guilty on December 3 in Rockhampton District Court to one count of trafficking dangerous drugs and four of supplying dangerous drugs.
The court heard Strandquist was cooperative with police when they searched her Gladstone residence and found two books being used as tick sheets, a bong, marijuana and messages on her phone in the Facebook Messenger app.
While most of Strandquist’s supplies, or offers to supply, were street level marijuana, there were some involving MDMA.
Her records showed she made 38 offers to more than 20 customers in a three month and three day trafficking period, with 17 actual supplies.
She was sentenced to a probation order while carrying out the trafficking business and disengaged from probation supervision.
Defence barrister Jordan Ahlstrand said Strandquist starting using marijuana when she was 12 and quickly developed a daily use habit.
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He said the longest period she had abstained was during the 266 days she had spent in pre-sentence custody with his client describing the feeling of being illicit drug free as “fantastic”.
Mr Ahlstrand said Strandquist had been diagnosed in 2012 with bipolar, depression and anxiety but was not compliant with her medications at the time of the trafficking.
He said she had used MDMA and methamphetamines socially, about once a month.
Mr Ahlstrand said Strandquist planned to relocate to Rockhampton upon release from prison and live with her godmother while she continued her rehabilitation journey.
He said her two toddlers were in her mother’s care.
Judge Jeff Clarke said it was very concerning Strandquist was on a probation order and bail when she carried out the trafficking offence.
“I really strongly encourage you not to waste your life,” he said.
“You are one day away from scoring again.
“It’s a hard habit to break.”
Judge Clarke sentenced Strandquist to two years’ prison, declared 266 days pre-sentence custody and set parole release as of December 3, 2020.